Under Texas law, all employees have certain rights, including the right to privacy, the right to fair compensation, and protection from any form of discrimination. Employment discrimination occurs when one worker is treated differently than a similarly qualified worker due to characteristics such as age, gender, race, religion, or sexual orientation. While worker discrimination is a serious offense, it is, unfortunately, difficult to prove.
Employment lawyer Dan A. Atkerson works hard to protect the rights of those who have been discriminated against in the workplace. Mr. Atkerson will present a strong case to the court so that clients can collect the financial compensation they are due. Here, we discuss potential evidence in a discrimination suit so our Plano, TX clients understand how they can strengthen their case and increase the chances of legal decision in their favor.
Proving Employment Discrimination
Before getting into the type of evidence that can be used in a worker discrimination case, let’s look briefly at what must be proven to assert that discrimination took place. During a worker’s discrimination case, Mr. Atkerson will work to prove three main factors:
- The employee had the qualifications necessary to perform the job or fulfill the duties of the job
- Despite the competence level, the employee was discriminated against
- In cases of termination, it must be shown that the dismissal was due solely to discriminatory reasons
To prove these three aspects of an employment discrimination case, evidence will need to be presented. Our attorneys rely on direct and consequential evidence to prove discrimination. Although direct evidence is the best form of proof, it is rare for an employer to directly state that a worker is being discriminated against. In most cases, the majority of evidence will be circumstantial.
Any communication with an employer can be crucial to a worker’s discrimination case. Interwork communications, emails, texts, or phone messages can all be used as evidence to back up a claim of worker’s discrimination. This direct evidence can prevent the court from deciphering he said/she said types of arguments.
Testimony is a powerful form of evidence in an employment discrimination case. It is important to tell your own story. However, it is especially helpful to gather testimony from witnesses. Statements from other employees who were witness to discriminatory words or actions can be crucial in backing up claims of discrimination.
Employers often conceal discrimination by claiming there were other issues present, such as poor performance. Past performance reports can prove a record of good service. Performance reports of other employees can also be used as means of comparison. If other workers have similar performance reports but were not terminated, that can strengthen a discrimination case.
To prove that an employee was meeting expectations, it is important to show a written job description detailing tasks and preferred qualifications. A job description can also help to prove that a potential employee was well-qualified for a denied job or promotion, or that an employee was let go and replaced with someone who had less qualifications for the position. All of this helps substantiate a discrimination claim.
In cases involving termination, it is important to present termination paperwork. Termination paperwork will detail why the employee was let go. With this evidence, it is easier to disprove reported reasons for termination, which will serve as further proof that discrimination was the real reason behind the firing.
If you have been a victim of worker discrimination, it is important to work with an experienced employment lawyer, such as Dan A. Atkerson. Contact us at your earliest convenience to learn more.